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Importing Canadian Vehicles to the U.S.



  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    ... That's a great article, thanks for droppin' it off ..

    That should fall in line with the Canadian dealer that got caught about 6 weeks ago at the Detroit auction with all the "roll backs" .. I bet his account is lookin' a little thin right now .. Ouch.! .l.o.l....

  • sonjaabsonjaab Posts: 1,057
    Check that again ! Some of the cars sold
    up here in northern NY have been converted
    to MPH speedos with importer sticker on door
    jamb. Also some are sold with just the km
    speedo. A couple of my buds up here have
    Can. import trucks with both!........geo
  • Often see customers from sonjaab's area. First thing I do is start asking questions about the trade, where did you buy it? Where is the title? Let's run a Vin check! Stuff like that. Too much of a headache. When someone is shopping trade 60-100 miles from thier home it just screams trouble. Funny thing is, when confronted with the facts, these customers get pissed at me. Like I am the first one to share the bad news with them. I will always tell them to take it back to where they bought it from.
  • Was that Landru who got caught doing the rollbacks? I always suspected he was hiding something.

  • landru2landru2 Posts: 638
    I say you sir, have impuned my character! I challenge you to duel! Lease calculators at thirty paces?

    :^) (I've always been a Foghorn Leghorn fan)
  • sonjaabsonjaab Posts: 1,057
    Overheard a conversation the other day
    "What do you mean you can't honor the
    warranty on my 2000 chevy ! Sold new
    in Canada ? Imported to the USA ? It
    was made in the US.......I bought it
    from a used car dealer..He didn't tell
    me that !" I listened to this person
    for a few minutes. Then went and spoke
    with her. I said GM cut off the warranty
    on Can. Imported cars a few months ago.
    Such as Honda , toy, and others did....
    I suggested she contact a GM dealer in
    Gan. Ont Can. for warranty work !
    Will keep ya' posted............geo
  • that people who actually go and buy cars from canada and then bring'em back here are pretty smart and dont allowfactories to take advantage of them because me, personally, cant think of any logical reason why the cars are priced higher here in the US(remember the cars are made in the US) than in Canada.
    however lower prices in canada are justified because wages are a lot lower and the canadian dolar is worth less than the USD.
    the other way around is not justified so if the american car makers want to discourage grey market imports they should stop charging more for the same car only because we(in the US) make more money.

    "buying American cars from Canada? I thought the idea of buying american was to support OUR auto workers and economy, not Canada's? How much were these poseurs saving?"

    thats the ideea here but it doesnt work that way:) first you support the companies that are ripping you off and the people that manage to go around that are not posers.

    my $0.02
  • landru2landru2 Posts: 638
    Actually quite a few cars are built in Canada.
  • janzjanz Posts: 129
    There was another thread called "Grey Area" that discussed pricing, etc. but and the facts remain, the US and Canada have different economies, different distribution channels, and different pricing and I am not going to go there.

    HOWEVER, IMHO, for those who knowingly choose to buy Canadian, have at it. But I do not think it is logical for them to expect factory support by the US distributorship that they went around when they purchased in Canada. Those purchase dollars went to Canada, not the US or US vehicle distributors.

    It is the unsuspecting owners, like the one mentioned above, that I feel for. Those who unwittingly end up with a nearly new vehicle that has no warranty coverage, may be subject to a safety recall but do not know because the truck was not brought into the country through appropriate channels, and could easily have an odometer tampered with because this process (or lack of) simply makes that too easy as well.

    Also, a while back I read an article that Canadian auto dealers are against the exportation of vehicles, (US OR NOT) as well. This negatively affects their allocations, used vehicle market, and bottom lines.
  • Hi everyone. A while back we had a discussion about gray market vehicles here on the Smart Shoppers Message Board. Essentially gray market vehicles are cars and trucks that are purchased from dealers in Canada and imported to the U.S. Many people were and I suppose to some extent still are importing these vehicles from Canada because manufacturers price their products lower there to help offset the higher taxes and exchange rates. To combat this, manufacturers refused to honor the warranties of Canadian vehicles that are imported to the U.S. As you can imagine, this upset many people. Apparently, yesterday a group of consumers filed a class-action lawsuit against several automakers because of this situation. Here are links to two articles on this subject: USA Today - Lawsuits filed over auto prices and Automotive News - Lawsuit Claims Automakers Block Canada-to-U.S. Sales. Enjoy, and please feel free to share your thoughts on / experiences with gray market vehicles and this lawsuit in this discussion.

    Smart Shoppers / FWI Message Boards
  • Essentially wraps up both sides of the arguements that were discussed previously. Hopefully now the courts will decide which side is crying foul.

    Class let me see, if consumers win I may see $3.00 for my 2002 new car purchase. At least maybe the courts will put an end to the practice of not honoring Canadian warranties in the US.

    Are there any websites that list manufacturer policies on this issue?
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    ..... They can Class action this one, til' the cows come home .. they tried it in 89, 92, 96 .. even including the dealers -- what they forget is ~ it's part of their dealer agreement.

             I'm not taking sides here .. but, the overhead in build cost, is also about 25% less in Canada (alot has do with Govt subsides and allowances there) --

           So, should we just close all the plants in the US, knock 500,000+++ folks out of work and open all production in Canada -- Or, let's get really aggressive, let's close every plant in the US and Canada, then open up 9/10 plants in China, that should get the prices waaay down ..!

  • So if I buy a car that is made in Canada it should cost me 25% less? I don't think that is the way it works, at least at my local dealerships.

    While I agree with the point you are making, if all car manufacturing was shipped overseas, that $20,000 car would still be $20,000. Cost savings in manufacturing is rarely passed on to the buyer without external forces for downward pricing pressure. Short this pressure the prices would stay the same or go up because everyone is paying that price already. Any cost savings would go to increasing profits.
  • wrobelwrobel Posts: 1
    I tried to skim through all pages but it's a lot so if I missed, forgive me.

    New here but wanted to ask this question. Has anyone imported older vehicles that were never made in the US? Canada has a 15yr law on importing cars from other countries such as Japan. So now Canada is getting an outpour of Skyline GTR's which have been highly desired for a long time in the US but could never be imported. Now that these are legally on the road in Canada, could they be imported to the US?

    If this doesn't work. Is it possible to purchase the car in canada through a friend and keep the title in canada and insure it for myself here to drive in the US?
  • mizangelmizangel Posts: 1
    A friend of mine from the US wants to buy my car that I have for sale. I'm trying to figure out how to transfer the title of my Canadian car into his name as he is an American. Do I just use a regualar Canadian bill of sale document, or do I need to use a special one?

    Also, if he comes up here to get it, how can he get it licenced so he can drive it back home to Indiana?
  • rroyce10rroyce10 Posts: 9,359
    .... "If" it's still under factory warranty, does your buyer know and understand that it won't transfer here ...?

  • d0nmand0nman Posts: 4
    I've got the same question as mizangel does, except I'm the one buying the vehicle from a private party in Ontario and will be bringing it back to NY state. It's a 1994 Grand Prix, so I'm not worried about warranty or any of that other stuff. Just curious about what the process is so I can drive it out of Canada and into NY... Does Ontario issue temporary tags and will Customs let me through with them? Or is it possible to get the title through the mail and register the vehicle in NY first?
  • engrgradengrgrad Posts: 3
    I am a Canadian that lives and works in the states. I am looking at purchasing a new vehicle and I was wondering if it is possible to trade in my Canadian vehicle at the dealer? It is registered in the states as of present but was originally manufactured for sale in Canada.

    can anyone help me out on this matter?

  • toddsulltoddsull Posts: 1
    I have the same question. Looking to buy a used car from a Canadian friend but dont know if I can drive it home or if titling it in the US will be a problem. If you find out please email me at [email protected] If i hear of how this works I will post it here.
  • bjnkbjnk Posts: 1
    Hi, I read through this thread with the hopes of finding my answer, but no luck so far, so hopefully you guys can help.

    I own a 1996 Thunderbird that I drove from Canada to Boston for college 3 years ago. It was not imported or anything, I simply drove down and have had it here for the last 3 years. I am now moving to Phoenix and now that I am out of university I am responsible for my own car insurance etc.

    So now my question is how do I go about registering it in AZ? Do I need to cross the border again with this car in order to properly import it, or can I just go the Arizona DMV and get things squared away? Will there be fee's I have to pay? Any help would be appreciated as anyone I have talked to don't really know what the protocal is.

    OR should I just keep it registered in Canada and have Canadian insurance? I have heard that my driving record (which is flawless lol) will not transfer anyways and I will basically be treated as a new driver by US insurance companies. Any truth to this?

    Your thoughts and comments are appreciated.

    Thank you.
  • Importing a GM car into the US from Canada. The US requires EPA/DOT compliances. I recently tried to sell my vehicle to a friend in pennsylvania and after two days of trying to locate the proper authorities here is the needed information. I figured that i would post it so no one else would have the troubles that i had trying to locate this info

    Call with your Vehicle Identification (Serial) Number toll-free (in Canada) 1-888-467-6853, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. EASTERN Time. (Outside Canada 1-905-440-7689).

    A nominal fee applies for the research service.

    We can also help you with the documentation required to export your used GM vehicle to the USA or overseas, and to import a GM vehicle to Canada.
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
    Here's a link: GMCanada

    tidester, host
    SUVs and Smart Shopper
  • Ok not sure how this fits in but......

    I live in Western New York (Rochester), and we see a LOT of Chrysler "Intrepids" and Pontiac "Parisians". how does this work ? Are the delaers bringing them down or the manufactuer ?
  • I live in Canada and traded in my Canadian car to a New York Broker and I signed over the title to them. The broker is calling me telling me he is trying to register the car at the DMV in New York so he can put into one of his auctions and they are asking for some customs border paperwork???

    The car I traded it in for was American and I did all the legal paperwork on my new US vehicle that I brought into Canada. As far as any paperwork that I did when I drove my canadian vehicel over into the US I did none?? I just drove it over because I wan't planning on selling my car at the time I crossed.

    Does anyone know what the broker is requiring from me? I did this transaction in January 2008.
  • I have found a Canada 04 Hyundai at a dealer in New Hampshire. I live in North Carolina. It could be a great price and the vehicle seems to be in good shape. I have done some reading and am still unsure as to whether this is all worth the risk of owning a Canadian vehicle so I'm hoping for some advice. There's probably not much factory warranty left, so that's not much of an issue as long as I can have this vehicle serviced, get parts, etc. in the U.S. I'm more concerned about needing special customs paperwork to register it in NC and have the emissions inspection done. It still has an odometer that reads in KM, not miles. Any help is greatly appreciated. Thanks!
  • janalapeljanalapel Posts: 5
    I am a U.S. citizen but have lived as a permanent resident in Canada for many years. I decided to drive my 8 yr. old dodge caravan to Arizona as a snowbird for the winter. I later decided to stay in Arizona longer term...but when I went to the motor vehicle dept. to register and license the van in Az. I was given a slip of paper with a private auto works business (owned by a Canadian) and was told "he can help you!" HUH? he offered to "impound" my van for 8 weeks (told me to rent a car) while he does all the mechanical changes required to "make this canadian van into U.S. equivalent" AND he handles the forms, paper work which was not done at the border. Since I didn't know I was going to remain in the u.s. Now I am either forced to drive the van back to Canada to sell it there....or pay this guy $2500. (Or he'll buy the van for $1800 and ship it back to Cn. for me)
    This doesn't sound right ...that the government is hooking me up with a private business to make my car into a "legal import"? I called customs at the border...and they said it is impossible to import your car unless you bring it through the border yourself?
    I am confused...and since I am a senior I cannot drive alone from Az. to the Cn. border. I'd like to get the truth about how people do this?
  • joeyfmxjoeyfmx Posts: 7
    did you ever figure it out? I am a us citizen but bought a car in canada, and I need to register it here in phoenix, az
  • janalapeljanalapel Posts: 5
    I was ready to drive back to Cn. and re-enter the U.S. from Alberta to import my van...when a friend from the military offered to simply drive me to Sky Harbor airport in U.S. customs where the whole process took ten minutes. They had all the necessary forms I was told I couldn't get except at the border. I downloaded them from the internet...but they had them ready and highlighted for easy work. The ONLY required document I had to provide was the letter of compliance (one sentence!!) from Chrysler Canada (actually came from Chrylser in Michigan and that took a few days of begging and faxing different numbers to get to the right department) plus the registration from Alberta.
    Same thing at motor vehicle dept. took no time at all...with documents from customs and the Chrysler letter of compliance and registration from Alberta. And to think of all the hoops I was going thru to do this. No inspection was necessary on my 8 yr. old van...other than emissions test I volunteered and paid for before I knew all this. It is definitely possible if you get the right information.
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